Giovanni Paolo Castelli known as Lo Spadino (Rome, 1659 – Rome, 1730)
Oil on canvas, 94×118 cm. with frame (73×98).
The life and production of this artist is closely linked to his hometown, from which he will never leave, Rome. The sources report that the first apprenticeship is to be traced back to his elder brother Bartolomeo, also a painter; but by carefully observing his works, a direct knowledge of the Flemish culture of still life, a favorite genre of Castelli, is clearly evident. It is certainly no coincidence that his neighbor was – from 1671 to 1674 – Abraham Breughel: to him we owe the evidence of a double belonging to the artist’s style, both Roman and Flemish.
From Breughel he learns the sumptuousness of the compositions, the attention to the theme of decadence and the use of strong and bright colors; a completely personal trait is given by the fact that Castelli moves away from the Flemish minutiae of the line and spreads the color in rapid brushstrokes. The exuberance of the composition contrasts with the decay of some fruits; the redundancy of the elements contrasts with a lack of attention to detail.
Yes, he wants to illustrate wealth, but with simplicity.
Our reference: A04548